Skip to comments.Breaking News: First-Ever Abortion Ban Based on Fetal Pain Passes in Nebraska
Posted on 04/13/2010 3:25:08 PM PDT by NYer
OMAHA, Nebraska, April 13, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Nebraska legislature has given final approval to a new law banning abortion after 20 weeks gestation on the basis that an unborn child feels pain at that age.
The new law is the first of its kind in the United States and pro-life advocates believe it could pose a direct and historic challenge to the 1973 Roe v. Wade case, which deprived the states the power to regulate or restrict abortion.
The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (LB 1103), authored by Speaker Mike Flood, passed Tuesday on the third and final reading of the bill by an overwhelming pro-life majority of 44 in favor and 5 against.
Gov. Dave Heineman is expected to sign LB 1103 into law.
The laws passage is especially historic, because it portends a fresh new challenge and look at the U.S. Supreme Courts 1973 Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton cases, which led to the virtual legalization of abortion on demand. The Nebraska law applies a different standard that of the unborn childs ability to feel pain - for restricting abortion, while the high court used the standard of what they then considered to be point of fetal viability.
"The Nebraska Legislature took a bold step today which should ratchet up the abortion debate across America," said Julie Schmit-Albin, Executive Director of Nebraska Right to Life in a statement today.
"LB 1103 creates a case of first impression for the courts to acknowledge the capability to feel pain as a compelling state interest to protect those unborn babies from an excruciatingly painful death.
The legislation, which now awaits the governors signature, bans abortions after 20 weeks of post-fertilization age with two exceptions: first, when the pregnancy puts the mother in danger of death or substantial and irreversible physical harm to a major bodily function. The second exception was added in an amendment and allows an abortionist to perform late abortions for the sake of increasing the probability of a live birth, or to preserve an unborn childs life and health after a live birth.
Although the topic of fetal pain is still under much discussion (and controversy, owing to its implications to the abortion debate) a growing consensus of medical knowledge has pointed to the fact that unborn infants experience pain by 20 weeks and possibly earlier. The pain may even be more acute than for older humans, as some research indicates their immature nervous systems have not developed coping mechanisms that help the body better endure pain.
The law notes that unborn children have been observed to seek to evade certain stimuli in a manner that would be interpreted as a response to pain. Additionally, the bill says unborn children exhibit hormonal stress responses to painful stimuli that were reduced with the application of pain medication.
Abortionists who break the law would face a Class IV felony charge, which carries a penalty of a five year maximum prison sentence, $10,000 fine, or both.
The bill would allow women and even the fathers of aborted unborn children to sue and seek damages from abortionists who violate the law.
The law, if passed and signed into law, would become operative on October 15, 2010.
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I donât think many or maybe even most liberals care if the baby feels pain...now if someone were to strike a terrorist, now that would have to be forbidden...but a baby...nah.
The 10th amendment in action!
Remember, consistency is key here. Other states may pass medical marijuana laws and we should allow these battles to be waged at the state level. There is no reason everything needs to kick it up to the federal level. Our answer to abortion, drugs and any number of things should be the answer the Constitution gave... let the states have authority over those issues.
I thought in Roe v Wade the Supreme Court legalized abortion until the fetus was "viable". With medical technology being what it is, this ruling seems consistent with Roe v Wade.
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Giving thanks to our Lord.
Wonderful news, hopefully this is a start to prevent women from butchering and the torturing of helpless babies.
Praise be to God!
SCOTUS in 19973 refused to determine when life begins.
I’m waiting for some state to legislate that life begins at conception. poof - abortion gone in that state.
Thank God. At least it’s a start.
Maybe it will qualify as cruel and unusual punishment ???
Praise the LORD! God Bless Nebraska!
Now, a sobering thought, is this going to be enforced or will there be stinking lawsuits by accessories to murder?
Being in the field of medical ultrasound in the past it seems the babies could feel pain a lot earlier than 20 weeks. My guess is at gestational age of 7-8 weeks they can feel pain since their limbs have already taken shape.
This is certainly great news, and a step in the right direction. Not a perfect law by any stretch, but it can save some babies, help to establish a “culture of life,” and start to chip away at Roe v. Wade.
But can someone explain to me this exception to the ban?
“The second exception was added in an amendment and allows an abortionist to perform late abortions for the sake of increasing the probability of a live birth, or to preserve an unborn childs life and health after a live birth.”
Is the aim of this exception to allow what are known by the Orwellian term “reductions” (where the mother is pregnant with triplets and they abort two of them) under the theory that aborting his siblings will help the lucky baby that was spared? If so, this is an outrageous exception. While I personally do not believe that there should be any exceptions to abortion bans other than to save the life of the mother, the “reduction” could be performed prior to week 20 without either violating the law or having to adopt such an amendment to the bill.
It's a good step; but a Baby step.
I am 20 weeks along and feeling my baby move around as I type. A ban based on the baby’s ability to feel should probably be earlier...I have felt movement for several weeks and he/she always “jumps around” if I have something very cold to drink.
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